2008 Saturn Vue electrical NHTSA complaints: Electrical System

NHTSA — Electrical System Problems

2008 Saturn Vue (Page 1 of 3)


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 2
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
67,006 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2008 Saturn Vue electrical problems

electrical problem

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2008 Saturn Vue Owner Comments (Page 1 of 3)

problem #53

Jan 032017


  • 105,000 miles


There was a recall bulletin issued for my model year vehicle: www-ODI.NHTSA.dot.gov/acms/cs/jaxrs/download/doc/ucm472842/rcrit-14V614-0055.pdf however, when I contacted my closest GM dealer they said that my VIN was not associated with this recall. This is concerning as the recall is describing the exact problem w/ the car and has been diagnosed by a service professional. One of the connectors on my ECM somehow has become contaminated and is causing the car to unexpectedly die while in use. Also as a result, the tcs/esp/and check engine lights all come on and remain on until the computer can be reset. It has done so twice while my wife has been driving it on the highway, creating very dangerous situations. It strands her on the side of the road until we can get the car started again and off the highway. This has also happened while the car is idling, and while traveling at low speeds off the highway. I understand that only certain vins are involved in certain recalls, but since the problem in the recall bulletin linked above is happening to our vehicle and our vehicle's VIN is not listed, I am concerned there could be others that are not aware of this and could become seriously injured when the vehicle shuts off.

- La Grange, KY, USA

problem #52

May 012016


  • 103,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Saturn Vue. While driving various speeds, the vehicle stalled without warning. Also, the doors would suddenly lock and unlock and the lighting on the instrument panel flashed. The contact stated there were many other electrical malfunctions that would occur without warning. In order to get the vehicle to function correctly, the contact had to turn the vehicle on and off several times. The contact took the vehicle to a certified mechanic who was unable to diagnose the failures. The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 103,000.

- Greenville, SC, USA

problem #51

Jul 252016


  • 150,000 miles
The key stuck in the key lock cylinder and would not turn. The Saturn Vue 08 had to be towed to the dealer, and the key lock cylinder drilled out and replaced. The new key lock assembly is performing similar to the one that failed. The key sticks in the cylinder and requires 4 or 5 tries to turn the ignition on. It will not pull out easily, but jams at the inside edge where the metal shank of the key meets the black plastic key casing. The new key lock assembly metal cover on the steering column appears to be catching, and shows bending. The new key shows severe scratches. The replacement key lock assembly silver rectangular opening where one inserts the key does not appear to be sturdy enough, and it bends easily causing the key to catch. The problem is progressing, and the key is starting to stick as before, making it impossible to turn and start the car. This has happened in a poorly lit parking lot, in line at drive throughs, and at the filling station. The problem is worsening. The dealer promised that the initial $700-plus repair is under warranty, but did not keep the scheduled repair date.

- Fair Play, SC, USA

problem #50

Jan 142015


  • 125,000 miles


The contact owns a 2008 Saturn Vue. After the vehicle was turned off, the ignition key would not release until after numerous attempts. The failure became progressively worse and, most recentlt, the ignition key could not be removed from the ignition cylinder. The battery was disabled and reconnected whenever the vehicle needed to be driven. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 125,000. The VIN was unavailable.

- Sparrow Point, MD, USA

problem #49

Jun 122016


  • miles
The contact owns a 2008 Saturn Vue. While driving in a parking lot, the contact noticed extensive smoke entering into the vehicle without warning. The contact was able to pull the vehicle over into a parking space and a fire erupted under the hood. The contact attempted to extinguish the fire, but the flames were too intense. A fire truck arrived to extinguish the flames. A police report was filed and there were no injuries. The vehicle was towed to a yard to be inspected by the insurance company. The manufacturer was not notified. The failure mileage was not available.

- Holly, MI, USA

problem #48

May 102015


  • 81,000 miles
Driving at freeway speed my car turned off briefly locking the steering wheel. The car started again and we where able to pull over safely. I checked and evaluated the car and we continued on. 35 miles later it did the same thing. When we stopped this time I removed the ignition key from the key ring and we traveled 500 miles to home. I had the ignition evaluated at victory layne Chevy and they determined the ignition was worn and replaced it but would not cover it under the active GM ignition recall. It should be expanded to include Saturn.

- Ft Myers, FL, USA

problem #47

Mar 012016


  • miles


After driving my car the ignition key would not turn to the "off" position once the car is stopped and the shifter in park. The key was stuck the after driving " had power but I couldnt remove my key, its stuck, couldn't move my steering wheel its locked. I tried moving back into the park position several times before the ignition key would release allowing the key out so can leave. Key in "off" position. I couldnt remove the key, steering wheel locked up, this happened twice now ? both times after driving in on slightly bumpy road fwy. "

- Long Beach, CA, USA

problem #46

Sep 302015


  • 115,000 miles
The heater core went bad in the vehicle. It started to smell like chemicals and the windows always fogged up when the heater was on.

- Cedar, MI, USA

problem #45

Jan 052016


  • 150,000 miles
Key stuck in ignition lock cylinder. Steering wheel locked. Brakes locked. Shifter locked. Emergency flasher lights not working. All electrical off, windows would not open. Key would not turn in lock cylinder. Car would not start. Onstar communication was disabled. Lock cylinder had to be drilled out and replaced. Housing in steering column was damaged and had to be replaced. Car had to be towed. Saturn Vues were recalled for ignition lock cylinder replacement, but 2008 models were left out of the recall. They should be on the recall list for ignition cylinder steering wheel lock problems along with the other Saturn Vue models. Steering wheel locked and prevented me from leaving a nearly empty parking lot at dusk. I had no way to call for help from the car. I depend on onstar for emergency assistance where cell signals are weak.

- Fair Play, SC, USA

problem #44

Jan 042016


  • 150,000 miles
Steering wheel locked. Key would not turn in lock cylinder. Car would not start. Onstar communication was disabled. Lock cylinder had to be drilled out and replaced. Housing in steering column was damaged. Saturn Vues were recalled for ignition lock cylinder replacement, but 2008 models were left out of the recall. They should be on the recall list for ignition cylinder steering wheel lock problems along with the other Saturn Vue models. Steering wheel locked and prevented me from leaving a nearly empty parking lot at dusk. I had no way to call for help from the car. I depend on onstar for emergency assistance where cell signals are weak

- Fairplay, SC, USA

problem #43

Dec 032012


  • 71,000 miles


Power steering would cut in and out while driving. Check lights would come on. Let car sit a bit restart engine then would steer correctly but not for too long then steering would become very hard and check lights would come on again. A few days would pass without incident then it would fail to steer properly, (without power). Took in and mechanic found a code for electric power steering motor failure and also the torque sensor, ( steering colum angle sensor) was bad. I read an artical sometime in 2013 that described my problem and it was being followed for a history but had not become a recall yet. Before wrinting this complaint form I reviewed my VIN # and still no recall :(

- Blaine, MN, USA

problem #42

Sep 102015


  • 135,000 miles
I replaced alernator starter and new battery and still having power issues with draining battery

- Phoenix , AZ, USA

problem #41

Aug 012015


  • 105,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Saturn Vue. While driving at any speed, the brakes seized, all of the calibers seized, and the anti-skid and ABS warning lights illuminated. The vehicle was towed to the dealer where it was diagnosed that there was contamination in the brake fluid. As a result, the brake pads, the hoses, and the brake fluid were replaced. The vehicle was repaired; however; the contact stated that the failure recurred multiple times. The vehicle was taken back to the dealer where the brake fluid was flushed and the booster and master cylinder were replaced. The vehicle was repaired. The failure mileage was 105,000.

- Kansas City, MO, USA

problem #40

Aug 222015


  • miles
Driver side headlight went out and then came back on.then the next day it went out again and never came back on.took the headlight out and the connectors are melted..this I think is not good and its going to cost about $150 to fix

- Glasgow, KY, USA

problem #39

Apr 252013


  • miles
Since the Saturn was purchased in October of 2013 it has had problems with the A/C and defrosters and sometimes heating, it works for about 10 to 15 minutes and quits and sometimes it does not work at all. Maybe not having A/C does not cause safety issues but not having defrosters work when it is pouring out and you can"T see out the window or when it is snowing and you can't defrost it off your windshield to see to drive then these things interfere with your safety. Apparently this is a known issues with this make and model of car and should be a recall to have it corrected. 2 years of this every summer and winter is quite enouugh.

- Magnolia, NJ, USA

problem #38

Jun 172015


  • 76,000 miles
Transmission stuttered once accelerating from a stop light, again later driving apprx 35 mph changing lanes; slight acceleration. Then noticed the engine light was on, so I pulled into a parking lot, stop the car and began checking the vehicle manual which indicated possible emission issues +++. began researching where the closest GM dealer was located. I turned the engine on, put it in reverse, checking for clearance behind me then stepped on the accelerator.... the engine revved and the car started to drift forward towards the vehicle parked in front of me. "no reverse?" good thing I left plenty of parking clearance. I then researched were a transmission shop was located. After the vehicle ahead of me pulled out I was able to drive out of the shopping center... once on the main road had to put the emergency lights on because the shifting into 3rd gear would like slip, going into a high rev, letting up off the accelerator allowed shifting to progress. Thank goodness the tranny shop was only 1/2 mile away. A couple of hours later the shop called that a couple of codes indicating possible electronic faults may be the cause. Now waiting for follow up.

- Gig Harbor, WA, USA

problem #37

May 252014


  • 130,000 miles
Last summer the air worked on and off. Problems were when you first started driving and in traffic but otherwise worked well. This year it has not worked at all. It blows fine but it's only hot air. Mechanic said freon was fine and could not correct the problem after trying everything he could. He replaced a switch or something which I can't recall right now but it didn't help. He is a well respected mechanic in the same place for over 20 years. I live in a very hot and humid area of the country and have medical issues which make driving the car a concern for me. I have read this is a common complaint with this car.

- Rockmart, GA, USA

problem #36

Mar 162015

Vue 6-cyl

  • 88,297 miles
While operating the vehicle, the engine began to sputter and steering became difficult. Once the vehicle was stopped, the vehicle would not start with the key being difficult to remove from the ignition. Electrical lights and operations became sporadic. Diagnosis was a defective body control module.

- Gilbert, AZ, USA

problem #35

Apr 272015

Vue 6-cyl

  • 89,663 miles
The vehicle was at the dealership for a different repair. Upon driving the car off the lot on Friday, I noticed that the air bag light was illuminated. I immediately returned to the dealership. On the following Monday, I was told that the air bag module had failed, causing the air bags to become inoperable. This car has experienced major electrical failures including ignition failure/replacement, HVAC module failure/replacement, body control module failure/replacement, brake sensor failure/replacement and now the airbag module failure/replacement. This vehicle needs to be taken off of the roads due to severe safety hazards and systems failure.

- Gilbert, AZ, USA

problem #34

Oct 102012

Vue 4-cyl

  • 78,929 miles
I got in the vehicle and turn the ignition, the dashboard cluster warning lights lit up blinking off and on. The vehicle started with the warning lights continuing to blink off and on. I turned the ignition switch off and tried to start vehicle again, but it would not start and the dashboard did not light up, but rather only the mileage indicator dimly lit up. I waited 5 minutes and the vehicle started up with dashboard working properly. With months later on I noticed the ac would go haywire blowing hot air via vent and I could not turn it off or get any cold air to blow.this would all happen intermittently. Then the backup light would come on and off intermittently, but within a minute it would stay off. Then as time passed I noticed the low fuel indicator stayed on permemently and the airbag light and tire pressure light would come on intermittently when I turned left using the the turn signal and then off when I turn right using turn signal. I took it to dealership and they found multiple dtc of loss communication with various modules and loose negative terminal and had to recalibrate all ac actuators. I had checked the battery terminals prior to taking car into dealership and they were tight. I picked up the vehicle and noticed low fuel light was still on and on way home the heater came on full blast via vent and when I turned controls off nothing worked. Then the airbag light and tire pressure light came on like before intermittently. The next day the ac worked fine, but there is occationally a loud popping sound from underneith dash. I took it back to dealership and waiting to get the vehicle back.

- Corpus Christi, TX, USA

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